The new Nexus 7

Started Jul 26, 2013 | Discussions
Jeff Peterman
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The new Nexus 7
Jul 26, 2013

The preview of the new Nexus 7 looks interesting: http://connect.dpreview.com/post/1397955347/nexus-7-tablet-for-photographers

However, to me, unless it has a MicroSD slot (to hold more files) and an OTG port (to connect to thumb drives and cameras), I'll pass.

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mosswings
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Jeff Peterman, Jul 26, 2013

Jeff Peterman wrote:

The preview of the new Nexus 7 looks interesting: http://connect.dpreview.com/post/1397955347/nexus-7-tablet-for-photographers

However, to me, unless it has a MicroSD slot (to hold more files) and an OTG port (to connect to thumb drives and cameras), I'll pass.

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I understand the reticence...on the other hand, the 7" and 8" competition that DOES have a uSD slot doesn't have as good a spec sheet or screen.  When you get into the 10" format, things start looking better.  And the Nexus 7 is OTG compatible, it just may not be full USB Host supporting...though we'll have to find that out in a few days. In any case, Nexus Media Importer solves most of those hard-wired interconnection problems.

As for me, a wireless hub/reader satisfies my need for photo backup, and 32GB is usually more than enough for me to store all my travel guides and whatever image files and programs I need to edit if I can move files between the HDD and onboard storage as needed. Of course, it also means carrying an outboard HDD setup, but then I shoot RAW and would have to use multiple 64GB uSD cards to store all that I shoot on a trip.

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Jeff Peterman
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to mosswings, Jul 26, 2013

the Nexus 7 is OTG compatible, it just may not be full USB Host supporting..

If it doesn't support USB Host mode, how can it be OTG compatible? I use my current Android devices to control my Canon 7D occasionally, using DSLR Controller. Also, when I travel, I often keep movies on a 32 GB thumb drive and copy them to my tablet/phone when I want to view them. If the "OTG" port doesn't support those two functions then it doesn't really help.

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mosswings
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Jeff Peterman, Jul 26, 2013

Jeff Peterman wrote:

the Nexus 7 is OTG compatible, it just may not be full USB Host supporting..

If it doesn't support USB Host mode, how can it be OTG compatible? I use my current Android devices to control my Canon 7D occasionally, using DSLR Controller. Also, when I travel, I often keep movies on a 32 GB thumb drive and copy them to my tablet/phone when I want to view them. If the "OTG" port doesn't support those two functions then it doesn't really help.

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What we don't know yet is whether the Android 4.3 version installed in the new Nexus 7 supports full USB host mode.  There are several "purer" Android "root" versions for the 1st generation Nexus 7 that do, and brave users have employed this trick for some time. There are also Nexus 7-compatible DSLR controllers (such as DSLR Dashboard) that use the uUSB port or a wireless link.

Again, for your usage model, the Nexus 7 is too limiting. For mine, a wireless hub works great and you can plug in the thumb drive of your choice into it.  But again, that's an extra box.

However, compared to the frustration of the iPad user, these limitations are small indeed.

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Jeff Peterman
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to mosswings, Jul 26, 2013

I had the chance to buy an iPad Mini, 16 GB, for $250. I happily bought it - for my wife. She's really pleased with it, but I would find it too limiting.

My current tablet is an Acer Iconia A500. It has 32 GB internal and I have a 32 GB microUSB card installed, and often use the full-size/full function USB port for a thumb drive, hard drive, connecting my camera, and even with a standard mouse. I've had it for about two years now and it does everything I need - but it is slow and the screen isn't as good as I'd like. The 7" or 8" screen size would be good enough, but I'm not yet ready to change. Maybe, when my phone contract runs out in a few months, I'll get a Note III (it should be out around that time) and maybe that screen will be big enough for me to get by. We'll see.

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Coolsiggy
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Jeff Peterman, Jul 31, 2013

Jeff

My daughter gave me a iPad 4-64, after 3 months of frustration I past it back as being too limited, in fact without Wifi or 3G available (real World) it becomes a toy . I use the Samsung GT6810 and like you insist on full host and uSD. The one thing I noted with the iPad is for home use the larger screen is best. I believe that the <8" tablets are best for travel and in most cases the need for ultra high dpi is not a high priority. I just wish manufacturers would support Android upgrades better..., I guess that could impact on new sales?

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seilerbird666
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Coolsiggy, Jul 31, 2013

Coolsiggy wrote:

Jeff

I just wish manufacturers would support Android upgrades better..., I guess that could impact on new sales?

Oh no, it has absolutely nothing to do with impacting sales. Every manufacturer gets the update from Google and then has to add their own interface on top of it such as Samsung's TouchQiz. Then the update and the new interface have to be tested on every model they wish to upgrade. That is expensive so they only update the latest and hottest phones since they are the only ones selling. And this process takes several months.

I have a Nexus 4 phone and a Nexus 7 tablet. Both of them were upgraded from 4.2.2 to 4.3 within a few days of the announcement. Google can do that because they don't add some stupid clunky interface on top so what you get is pure Android without the interface and all the crapware. And the Nexus 4 is unlocked and dirt cheap compared to the other top of the line phones.

As far as a micro SD slot goes I personally fail to see the need. You have essentially unlimited storage online available to anyone. I don't need to have more that 32 gigs stored locally.

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Jeff Peterman
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to seilerbird666, Jul 31, 2013

As far as a micro SD slot goes I personally fail to see the need. You have essentially unlimited storage online available to anyone.

I travel a lot, and MANY times I don't have access to the Web (such as on an 8 hour flight) but still want access to my movies/music etc. Also, if I want to backup photos from my camera, uploading 16 GB of photos over WiFi can take a while - transferring by USB to a microSD card is MUCH faster.

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Ken Gosden
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Jeff Peterman, Jul 31, 2013

Jeff Peterman wrote:

As far as a micro SD slot goes I personally fail to see the need. You have essentially unlimited storage online available to anyone.

I travel a lot, and MANY times I don't have access to the Web (such as on an 8 hour flight) but still want access to my movies/music etc. Also, if I want to backup photos from my camera, uploading 16 GB of photos over WiFi can take a while - transferring by USB to a microSD card is MUCH faster.

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Certainly don't want to be uploading over 3/4G on a data plan either.  I use my tablet when I am out in wilderness areas or even in the low population north Georgia mountains and can be out of coverage for days at a time.  I am content to use the options to manage my media through a variety of USB or WiFi based drives.  Certainly a built in SD slot would help, but I tend to use CF cards in my DSLR so I would still have some challenges.

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mosswings
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Ken Gosden, Jul 31, 2013

Ken Gosden wrote:

Jeff Peterman wrote:

As far as a micro SD slot goes I personally fail to see the need. You have essentially unlimited storage online available to anyone.

I travel a lot, and MANY times I don't have access to the Web (such as on an 8 hour flight) but still want access to my movies/music etc. Also, if I want to backup photos from my camera, uploading 16 GB of photos over WiFi can take a while - transferring by USB to a microSD card is MUCH faster.

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Certainly don't want to be uploading over 3/4G on a data plan either. I use my tablet when I am out in wilderness areas or even in the low population north Georgia mountains and can be out of coverage for days at a time. I am content to use the options to manage my media through a variety of USB or WiFi based drives. Certainly a built in SD slot would help, but I tend to use CF cards in my DSLR so I would still have some challenges.

According to Anandtech.com's review, the new Nexus 7 has removed support for OTG.  So wireless drives are the only way to go for backup/image access with the new tablet, just like with the iPad.

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Jeff Peterman
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Ken Gosden, Jul 31, 2013

I connect a USB CF card reader to the USB port of the tablet (or my cell phone via an OTG adapter) and copy the photos from the CF card to the microSD card inserted into the tablet (or phone).

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birdloverintex
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to mosswings, Aug 1, 2013

According to Anandtech.com's review, the new Nexus 7 has removed support for OTG. So wireless drives are the only way to go for backup/image access with the new tablet, just like with the iPad.

I was alarmed to read that, so I quickly read the review. Much of it was impenetrable for me, but I do not see where the review said Google removed OTG support. Can you amplify on this? I had hoped this would be the tablet for me.

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mosswings
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to birdloverintex, Aug 1, 2013

birdloverintex wrote:

According to Anandtech.com's review, the new Nexus 7 has removed support for OTG. So wireless drives are the only way to go for backup/image access with the new tablet, just like with the iPad.

I was alarmed to read that, so I quickly read the review. Much of it was impenetrable for me, but I do not see where the review said Google removed OTG support. Can you amplify on this? I had hoped this would be the tablet for me.

I screwed up. It was mentioned in another review which I now can't locate. Early adopters have been trying this, and this thread:

http://www.nexus7nexus10.com/forum/nexus-7-2nd-generation/3472-does-gen2-new-nexus-7-still-support-otg-cables.html

lists some of their findings.

It should be noted that the original Nexus 7 behaved exactly the same way as the new version does - the kernel support for OTG I/O is missing.  To get the Nexus 7 to support full I/O host mode, you have to overwrite the Android 4.3 OS shipped with the tablet with a modified one (called "rooting"), which voids the warranty.  Full host mode is something that Samsung tablets generally support natively.

What users of the Nexus 7 have found to work are two:

1. Use Nexus Media Importer.  This simple app supports read/write through a special app that works on stock Android 4.2 or 4.3.  Many satisfied users.

2. Use a wireless card reader/hub.  This is what I use (specifically, the Kensington Mobillite), and it has the great advantage of being both OS agnostic (the card reader/hub is accessed through an app, available on iOS or Android 4.x+), and capable of direct card-external storage device transfers in which the tablet simply initiates the transfer, but does not do anything else.  This allows for very fast SD card backup - about 10-12MB/sec, close to what USB2 is capable of.  Files can be accessed wirelessly from the tablet and transferred into local storage at will.  You can also use the Mobillite as a Wifi passthrough to allow you to surf the web while the transfer completes.

I'd advise to not be so worried about OTG support; there are many options now available to you that don't involve cables.

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birdloverintex
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to mosswings, Aug 1, 2013

Your post is most reassuring. I have read about the Kingston Mobilelite on Amazon and have it in my cart as a maybe purchase. I hope to at least check out the Nexus form factor tomorrow if Best Buy has an example in stock (and if not the new one, at least the old model). I want a tablet for viewing and culling snaps while on a trip, for eventual transfer to Aperture.

The OTG option interested me for light weight and low cost. I am hoping I like the Nexus form factor as compared with the iPad Mini and other tablets.

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Jeff Peterman
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to mosswings, Aug 1, 2013

One great use for OTG is with DSLR controller to remotely control a camera - that would still be a problem.

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Ken Gosden
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Re: The new Nexus 7
In reply to Jeff Peterman, Aug 1, 2013

Jeff Peterman wrote:

I connect a USB CF card reader to the USB port of the tablet (or my cell phone via an OTG adapter) and copy the photos from the CF card to the microSD card inserted into the tablet (or phone).

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Jeff,

I understand your solution.  However, my comment was specific to the Nexus 7 and Kingston Mobilelite hub and the goal of copying my CF cards to either a harddrive or a flash drive.  Both devices only offer a single USB port.  So I would need to use a powered USB hub, not a great back woods option, or a double transfer process; CF to SD, then SD to HD.  One I have not bothered to try is using a CF reader on the Nexus and transferring to the Kingston via WiFi.  I have not test this since I assume the transfer would be fairly slow.  I could potentially switch to SD media in my E-5 or use the dual slots to copy in the camera from CF to SD.

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Re: Without Wifi or 3G
In reply to Coolsiggy, Aug 3, 2013

Coolsiggy wrote:

Jeff

My daughter gave me a iPad 4-64, after 3 months of frustration I past it back as being too limited, in fact without Wifi or 3G available (real World) it becomes a toy .

Maybe it's not 101% true for me to say it, but without Wifi or 3G, I really would think the value of any tablet would be quite limited.

In such a case, I once was forced to look at the books that I have on my iPad in iBooks, but I'd really think if you think your tablet has a great deal of utility, even when you're not connected to the Internet, you're kidding yourself.

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mosswings
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Re: Without Wifi or 3G
In reply to dmartin92, Aug 3, 2013

dmartin92 wrote:

Coolsiggy wrote:

Jeff

My daughter gave me a iPad 4-64, after 3 months of frustration I past it back as being too limited, in fact without Wifi or 3G available (real World) it becomes a toy .

Maybe it's not 101% true for me to say it, but without Wifi or 3G, I really would think the value of any tablet would be quite limited.

In such a case, I once was forced to look at the books that I have on my iPad in iBooks, but I'd really think if you think your tablet has a great deal of utility, even when you're not connected to the Internet, you're kidding yourself.

How can an iPad not have WiFi? That's its primary communication method with the internet.  If it doesn't have cellular mobile connectivity (3G/4G/LTE), that might be a problem, but not if you also have a smartphone that can function as a WiFi hotspot.

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dmartin92
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Re: Without Wifi or 3G
In reply to mosswings, Aug 3, 2013

nobody is talking about an iPad that has no ability to connect to a WiFi network, all that is being talked about is those situations where there is no WiFi network (or 3G) to connect to.

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mosswings
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Re: Without Wifi or 3G
In reply to dmartin92, Aug 3, 2013

dmartin92 wrote:

nobody is talking about an iPad that has no ability to connect to a WiFi network, all that is being talked about is those situations where there is no WiFi network (or 3G) to connect to.

Ah. I misunderstood your comment. I agree. There are certain situations in which a standalone tablet is useful (reading books on a plane, etc.), but in the main it is basically a form of simple computer terminal and is designed to be connected to the cloud for most of its utility.

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